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Possible Duplicates:
Should up and down votes cancel each other?
Should we reduce rep bonus for upvotes on posts with a negative score?

What I'm describing here could have been discussed before. If so, I apologize in advance - this is a complex issue to search for (I tried!).

Many times I've noticed the following effect:

  1. Someone provides an answer
  2. Someone else downvotes it for one reason or another, maybe unjustified
  3. People seeing the -1 feel bad for the answerer since the answer is reasonable and vote +1 to balance

The effect of this: the user gained +8 reputation. The problem I see with this is that the answer would probably gain no upvote had it not had the -1 on it. The same works for questions, by the way.

Isn't it more reasonable to cancel downvotes with upvotes, at least in the vicinity of zero - so that an answer with +1 and -1 wouldn't have a relatively large net positive reputation?

Does this make sense?


Update: OK, thanks guys. I'll look there...

marked as duplicate by random, ChrisF, fretje, Jeff Atwood Mar 26 '10 at 9:10

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